I have an artificial joint. Do I need to take antibiotics before a dental procedure?

Since 2012, according to the American Dental Association and the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons, the answer is no for most people. If you have had a joint replacement and taken antibiotics before dental work in the past, you may not need to make a trip to the pharmacy before your next procedure. Some patients …

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I have a heart condition and my physician has recommended that I take antibiotics before dental care. Why would I need to do this?

Any dental procedure likely to cause bleeding, including a dental cleaning, can allow sticky bacteria from your mouth to enter your bloodstream and stick to heart valves or the lining of your heart. This can cause an infection. For this reason, there are certain heart conditions that may require you to take an antibiotic before …

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What can I do about stained or discolored teeth?

Since teeth whitening has now become the number one aesthetic concern of many patients, there are many products and methods available to achieve a brighter smile. Professional teeth whitening (or bleaching) is a simple, non-invasive dental treatment used to change the color of natural tooth enamel, and is an ideal way to enhance the beauty …

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What should I do if I have bad breath?

Bad breath (halitosis) can be an unpleasant and embarrassing condition.  Many of us may not realize that we have bad breath, but everyone has it from time to time, especially in the morning. There are various reasons one may have bad breath, but in healthy people, the major reason is due to microbial deposits on …

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How often should I brush and floss?

Brushing and flossing help control the plaque and bacteria that cause dental disease. Plaque is a film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva that sticks to the teeth and gums.  The bacteria in plaque convert certain food particles into acids that cause tooth decay.  Also, if plaque is not removed, it turns into calculus (tartar).  …

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Are amalgam (silver) fillings safe?

Over the years there has been some concern as to the safety of amalgam (silver) fillings.  An amalgam is a blend of copper, silver, tin and zinc, bound by elemental mercury.  Dentists have used this blended metal to fill teeth for more than 100 years.  The controversy is due to claims that the exposure to …

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How often should I have a dental exam and cleaning?

You should have your teeth checked and cleaned at least twice a year, though your dentist or dental hygienist may recommend more frequent visits. Regular dental exams and cleaning visits are essential in preventing dental problems and maintaining the health of your teeth and gums.  At these visits, your teeth are cleaned and checked for …

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How can I tell if I have gingivitis or periodontitis (gum disease)?

Four out of five people have periodontal disease and don’t know it!  Most people are not aware of it because the disease is usually painless in the early stages.  Unlike tooth decay, which often causes discomfort, it is possible to have periodontal disease without noticeable symptoms.  Having regular dental check-ups and periodontal examinations are very …

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Why is it important to use dental floss?

Brushing our teeth removes food particles, plaque, and bacteria from all tooth surfaces, except in between the teeth.  Unfortunately, our toothbrush can’t reach these areas that are highly susceptible to decay and periodontal (gum) disease. Daily flossing is the best way to clean between the teeth and under the gumline.  Flossing not only helps clean …

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How can cosmetic dentistry help improve the appearance of my smile?

If you’re feeling somewhat self-conscious about your teeth, or just want to improve your smile, cosmetic dental treatments may be the answer to a more beautiful, confident smile. Cosmetic dentistry has become very popular in the last several years, not only due to the many advances in cosmetic dental procedures and materials available today, but …

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What are porcelain veneers and how can they improve my smile?

Porcelain veneers are very thin shells of tooth-shaped porcelain that are individually crafted to cover the fronts of teeth.  They are very durable and will not stain, making them a very popular solution for those seeking to restore or enhance the beauty of their smile. Veneers may be used to restore or correct the following …

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